Studies have shown that trained athletes prefer a higher cadence when cycling than less trained or untrained athletes. Specifically:
- Cyclists and runners (VO2max: 70.7 +/- 4.1 and 72.5 +/- 2.2 mL.kg-1.min-1, respectively) maintained PC between 90 and 100 rpm at all power outputs and both groups selected similar cadences at each power output.
- In contrast, the less-trained group (VO2max = 44.2 +/- 2.8 mL.kg-1.min-1) selected lower cadences at all common power outputs and reduced cadence from approximately 80 rpm at 75 W to 65 rpm at 175 W.
Four years ago, when I walked into my first winter spin class, I can remember not even having a cadence meter of any kind. But a week later, when I had that sorted out, yes, I would float between 60 and 80 for sure. My habits are much improved, but its interesting to see the cadence and watts relationship being used to test more experienced riders.